philip lelyveld The world of entertainment technology

11Dec/18Off

Electric Fish In Augmented Reality Reveal How Animals “Actively Sense” the World Around Them

In a new study, NJIT and Johns Hopkins researchers have used augmented reality technology to alter this link and unravel the mysterious dynamic between active sensing movement and sensory feedback. The findings report that subtle active sensing movements of a special species of weakly electric fish — known as the glass knifefish (Eigenmannia virescens) — are under sensory feedback control and serve to enhance the sensory information the fish receives. The study proposes the fish use a dual-control system for processing feedback from active sensing movements, a feature that may be ubiquitous in animals.

Researchers say the findings, published in the journal Current Biology, could have implications in the field of neuroscience as well as in the engineering of new artificial systems — from self-driving cars to cooperative robotics.

What is most exciting is that this study has allowed us to explore feedback in ways that we have been dreaming about for over 10 years,” said Eric Fortune, associate professor of biology, who led the study at NJIT. “This is perhaps the first study where augmented reality has been used to probe, in real time, this fundamental process of movement-based active sensing, which nearly all animals use to perceive the environment around them.”

“We’ve known for a long time that these fish will follow the position of their refuge, but more recently we discovered that they generate small movements that reminded us of the tiny movements that are seen in human eyes,” said Fortune. “That led us to devise our augmented reality system and see if we could experimentally perturb the relationship between the sensory and motor systems of these fish without completely unlinking them.

To investigate, the researchers placed weakly electric fish inside an experimental tank with an artificial refuge enclosure, capable of automatically shuttling back and forth based on real time video tracking of the fish’s movement. The team studied how the fish’s behavior and movement in the refuge would be altered in two categories of experiments: “closed loop” experiments, whereby the fish’s movement is synced to the shuttle motion of the refuge; and “open loop” experiments, whereby motion of the refuge is “replayed” to the fish as if from a tape recorder. Notably, the researchers observed that the fish swam the farthest to gain sensory information during closed loop experiments when the augmented reality system’s positive “feedback gain” was turned up — or whenever the refuge position was made to mirror the movement of the fish.  

See the full story here: https://news.njit.edu/electric-fish-augmented-reality-reveal-how-animals-actively-sense-world-around-them

11Dec/18Off

Tesla Patent Application Mentions Augmented Reality Safety Glasses

https---blogs-images.forbes.com-sebastianblanco-files-2018-12-tesla-factory-aerial-view-1200x521Tesla’s new manufacturing concept disclosed in this application could be used by a robot or a human. A human could use the AR system to program a robot to better assemble parts. A human or a robot could then use AR to conduct quality control checks, perhaps using computer aided design information to compare what it “sees” with how it’s supposed to be. The AR could be aided by "reference markers” - something like, "a 3-D marker, a sticker, a QR code, or a radio-frequency identification tag” - on the items.

See the full story here: https://www.forbes.com/sites/sebastianblanco/2018/12/07/tesla-patent-augmented-reality-safety-glasses/#20cd93eb1bfd

11Dec/18Off

Cryptocurrency To Gain Massive Adoption In VR, Coinbase CEO Predicts

Cryptocurrency-to-Gain-Massive-Adoption-in-VR-Coinbase-CEO-Predicts[Philip Lelyveld comment: we've seen this for years with in-game economies.  The question is whether demand for cross-game and cross-experience economies will develop.]

Innovations in cryptocurrency market will in the near future, challenge traditional banking and finance systems, and bring virtual reality to either change or oust the status quo in this area.

It will most likely do this by becoming the preferred currency in virtual reality. That is the hypothesis and thought of Brian Armstrong, founder of Coinbase in his new blog titled Digital Currency Could Be Widely Used in VR.

In other words, when people trade in virtual worlds, it will no longer be fashionable- or perhaps even rude- to rely on or use the currency of one country. Digital currency at that material time will then become the currency that will be used in these virtual spaces.

See the full story here: https://bitcoinexchangeguide.com/coinbase-ceo-predicts-virtual-reality-to-be-a-major-cryptocurrency-adoption-booster/

11Dec/18Off

IOC eases off support for electronic gaming as Olympic event

Enthusiasm has seemed to dim since the IOC hosted a July conference with esports organizers and players.

Sports bodies are now advised to "continue to engage with this (gaming) community, whilst at the same time acknowledging that uncertainties remain."

The IOC rules out cooperation with violent games, and suggests virtual and augmented reality could become more popular with young people.

"Commercially driven" gaming was also compared unfavorably with "values-based" sports.

The IOC says governing bodies will continue meeting gaming industry officials "to explore jointly collaborative projects."

See the full story here: https://www.heraldbulletin.com/sports/national_sports/ioc-eases-off-support-for-electronic-gaming-as-olympic-event/article_60477eeb-0744-524b-b209-f488c4130b9e.html

11Dec/18Off

Virtual and augmented reality infiltrate art and communication scene

VR-AR-2A virtual museum, in VR and AR, will also be created in Timisoara, the app being able to “tell the stories” of Timisoara’s historical buildings, when users pass them.

“Timisoara also had, and I hope still has, the Simultan Festival, which in 2017 had its 12th edition, called Possible Future. The aim is so simple and representative: creating a platform for contemporary cultural projects which use technology as an artistic mean of expression. Moreover, Cristian Vieriu, with his business Wild Draft, is also constantly pushing boundaries and provided a few years back some interesting 360 documentary videos of performances at the Jazz TM festival in Timisoara. His portfolio includes a lot of digital tech animations and sound designs such as Interior8. Last, but not least, I have to mention The Funky Citizens NGO, our neighbors and friends, who have used AR very interestingly with an interactive expo of photographs: Protest, which came to life for the audiences experiencing it through their smart phones,” added Bucureci.

See the full story here: http://business-review.eu/tech/br-analysis-virtual-and-augmented-reality-infiltrate-art-and-communication-scene-192992

11Dec/18Off

Why VR is out of touch with reality for women

http---com.ft.imagepublish.upp-prod-us.s3.amazonaws.com-aa7a1160-f967-11e8-af46-2022a0b02a6c

http---com.ft.imagepublish.upp-prod-us.s3.amazonaws.com-8983dff0-f97f-11e8-a154-2b65ddf314e9As co-founder and creative director of East London design collective called body>data>space, 56-year-old Ms Boddington focuses on blending the virtual and physical by combining telepresence — using tech to participate in distant events — virtual worlds and experimental environments that can be controlled using physical gestures. These include 210-degree domes or “spheres” — entertainment venues in which a VR immersive experience can become a shared social activity rather than a singular one experienced via a headset.
So far, the use of VR technology has gained limited traction among women. Two-thirds say they are unlikely to try either VR or AR, according to a 2017 report by the consultancy EY, compared with half of men. “Like so many technologies, adoption happens when consumers don’t think about the technology itself but what it allows them to do,” says Martyn Whistler, an analyst at EY. Developing real-use applications in areas such as retail, tourism and fitness will demonstrate their value to women, he adds. Ms Boddington agrees. “A high proportion of VR content is male heterosexual porn,” she explains. “Content creators need to think in a much more diverse way” to broaden the technology’s appeal, she adds. She prefers to focus on the body from a different perspective. She uses the phrase “internet of bodies” to encompass the idea that the body should be central to the digital experience.

See the full story here: https://www.ft.com/content/79066ba0-dd43-11e8-b173-ebef6ab1374a

11Dec/18Off

Arca’s Path PSVR review: A relaxing virtual reality game that anybody can play

Arca-s-Path-for-PlayStation-VR-1636954From motion sickness to calibration calamities, most people would agree that virtual reality has its fair share of problems.

By stripping things back to the very basics, Arca's Path bypasses many of the common issues associated with virtual reality.

With not a single controller in sight - everything is controlled by your head - Arca's Path is an elegant experience that's highly tranquil.

It all begins when your character is drawn into a beautiful and mysterious new world that's positively drowning in colour.

The lead character is represented by a ball, and it's up to you to guide this ball through the labyrinth and eventually break free.

It's kind of like a narrative-driven Super Monkey Ball, only instead of tilting the game world, you have direct control over your character. Just look at where you want to go, and the ball will follow.

See the full story here: https://www.express.co.uk/entertainment/gaming/1056545/Arcas-path-playstation-vr-PSVR-review

11Dec/18Off

How Virtual Reality Is Helping To Empower Women

006-jeremy-bailenson-vogue-int-16nov-credit-getty-imagesNot just the domain of gamers and geeks, VR is now being pioneered as a tool to help women in a host of different ways, from educating workplaces about sexual harassment, to exploring the heights of female desire, and even managing the pain of childbirth.

See the full story here: https://www.vogue.co.uk/article/how-virtual-reality-is-helping-to-empower-women

11Dec/18Off

How VR Is Being Used to Help Children With Learning Disabilities, Autism

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Nils Jorgensen/REX/Shutterstock (8823238aw) Mat Collishaw. Thresholds, at Photo London Photo London press preview, London, UK - 17 May 2017 Photo London third edition press preview, which showcases 88 galleries from 17 countries, at Somerset House, London

Mandatory Credit: Photo by Nils Jorgensen/REX/Shutterstock (8823238aw)
Mat Collishaw. Thresholds, at Photo London
Photo London press preview, London, UK - 17 May 2017
Photo London third edition press preview, which showcases 88 galleries from 17 countries, at Somerset House, London

The United States Department of Education is betting on virtual reality to help students with high-functioning autism and learning disabilities in schools across the country. This month the Office of Special Education and Programs announced its investment of $2.5 million toward a new program that will use VR to nurture social skills in students with disabilities – an extension on earlier funding for versions of the program designed for desktop and tablets in 2011.

The project is called VOISS: Virtual Reality Opportunities to Implement Social Skills, and is developed by researchers at the University of Kansas’ Center for Research on Learningand Department of Special Education – a collective of academics and Ph.D.s who are treading the waters that intersect virtual reality and education. In addition to students and teachers participating in the project, KU researchers will work in collaboration with educational leaders at the Ohio Center on Autism and Low Incidence Disabilities and a team of computer scientists at Western Illinois University.

See the full story here: https://variety.com/2018/digital/features/voiss-interview-vr-hmd-1203086576/

11Dec/18Off

Rio’s Museum of Astronomy Launches Virtual Reality Exhibition

virtual2Combining the expertise of MAST and the design department at PUC-Rio, this new show will feature exhibits developed during an interdisciplinary study carried out by students from the ‘Design em Mídia Digital’ (Design in Digital Media) course at the university. The curators of the exhibition are Marcelo Pereira, Assistant Coordinator of Academic Technology at PUC-Rio, and João de Sá Bonelli, Deputy Coordinator of Digital Media at the university.

There are a total of eight featured exhibits, including ‘Zéfiro’ by Luciana Frazão dos Santos, which aims to improve the quality of air in urban centers by raising citizens’ awareness of this problem and possible solutions.

Another exhibit, ‘Monora,’ is designed by Ana Beatriz Lemos and is a virtual reality experience that simulates some of the symptoms that people with anxiety disorders suffer from.

There is also ‘Interregno,’ an installation created by Felipe Salazar that creates an environment of transition between layers of real and virtual spaces, allowing participants to see new connections between our bodies and the digital universe.

A further featured piece is LAR – ‘Livro em Realidade Aumentada’ (Book in Augmented Reality) an interactive experience by Caterina Brasil, which shows how technology can be used to augment the traditional practice of reading by overlapping content that amplifies the original material.

See the full story here: https://riotimesonline.com/brazil-news/rio-entertainment/rios-museum-of-astronomy-launches-virtual-reality-exhibition/